Lisa Ziegert case: Developments in Massachusetts teacher’s cold case



average siblings and an average family living a happy average life in that small town nothing ever happens in until one day it does but it's a parent's worst nightmare it's a day that changes who you are forever and exactly what happened will destroy this tight-knit communities trust may be a friend of a friend of a friend who might have become fixated with her and leave them pointing fingers at one another rumors about people who are close to us the truth won't come easily but prosecutors are determined to unearth the evil in their midst we will solve this case find the person who did this and bring him to justice you're looking through the eyes of a monster to see exactly what he saw the night he entered this agawam massachusetts gift shop with murder on his mind but just four hours before he'll walk in someone else will enter this storm her name Lisa Z hurt she was the second of our four children curly curly brown hair big blue eyes and a wonderful giggle that if you heard it you had to laugh the smallest she was tiny she was only five two she was not a big person sure but she was big inside it can't we're accounted the 24 year old is a teacher's assistant working with special education children it's her passion but it doesn't pay much so like many teachers Lisa gets a second job she started working in the gift shop she worked there a couple of nights a week and on this night is crime watch daily first investigated it's an average Wednesday for Lisa working behind the counter at Brittany's gift shop her shift which would start at 5:00 and usually end about 9:00 o'clock at night and like clockwork one of Lisa's regular stops it is her sister Lynn I went into the card store and it was a very slow evening for her she was talking to me about what she wanted to do with her life how she was feeling about you know being an assistant teacher then eventually takes off and leaves her sister to finish her shift a few people came in and out of the store not anything out of the ordinary shortly after Lin leaves another customer stops by and makes a purchase according to a receipt time-stamped 8:20 p.m. then not long after that a final customer pops in right as the store is closing nine o'clock this customer comes to the store this story looks like it's still open she comes in she she works around nobody's coming to her sister which she feels is odd because the store is open after looking around for a few minutes she thinks she hears some type of a noise in the back area of the store she does not investigate it she then leaves the store the next morning a co-worker arrives to begin her morning shift at the same gift shop she too finds the door open lights on and she knows as Lisa car is still in the parking lot but when this employee enters the store right away she's unnerved by what she sees lying right next to the cash register she notices Lisa's pocketbook she knows Lisa sets a key is still there but eerily Lisa is nowhere to be found frantic the co-worker calls 911 at the same time Lisa's family is flooded by worried phone calls from Lisa's school where she was a no-show that morning no one is prepared for that there's no way that you wake up in the morning or you go to bed the night before and you say think tomorrow is going to be a day that's going to change my life the Z rat family races to the gift shop and finds it cordoned off and surrounded by police detectives on the scene interview Lisa's family and co-workers she was a very responsible young lady this isn't somebody that just went out and didn't check in with friends or anything like that they knew relatively quick that this is a missing person case a true nightmare but true nightmare you keep hoping that of course that it's just a mistake and she went someplace and with someone but as investigators searched the store they make a chilling discovery there's evidence at the card shop at that scene there is evidence of a struggle in the back room as seen on this actual crime scene footage what appears to be shoe markings on a door and there is a small amount of blood at the scene right away investigators believe Lisa's eager isn't only missing she was taken everything indicated that she did not leave this store on her own accord but where did this abductor take the 24 year old schoolteacher multiple law enforcement agencies join the search for Lisa including the Agawam police Massachusetts State Police and the FBI I mean everybody everybody wanted this there and well then on Easter Sunday and four days after the school teacher went missing police get a call from a resident indicating that he went for a walk with his dog in the woods and he believes he found some human remains they are the remains of a young woman who has been raped and stabbed shortly after the grisly find a detective from the Agawam Police Department knocks on Dee's ears front door he said we found her and I went she's dead isn't she and he had tears in his eyes and I I don't remember I remember kind of going to my knees the worst day of my life twenty-four-year-old massachusetts schoolteacher lisa Z hurt is found raped and stabbed to death just four days after she was abducted but who took Lisa and killed her has left the small New England town of Agawam shaken to its core it was now the crime of the decade women being fearful getting pistol permits and because the one knew exactly what happened cops on the case chased down every lead a lot hundreds of interviews then investigators get a lucky break when they're able to extract the killer's DNA from the crime scene we've had the proverbial bloody fingerprint in this case then we just need to get that match the crux of the case is attaching an identity that a DNA and we likely had an offender but detectives and even Lisa's own family take special note of the curious place where Lisa's body was discovered a rural area no houses or anything like that around it's not a visible turn off from the main road in fact it's a spot that someone would have to know in order to get there always thought it was somebody who's very familiar with the area just based on where she was found it doesn't take long for the small town rumor mill to start spinning in as the months passed the talk on the streets turns into a full-fledged accusation the finger pointing is squarely at one man every guy he was a friend of my sister's friend or fatal foe and attended high school with Lisa and even live with Lisa's sister and boyfriend at the time she was murdered coincidence not according to the court of public opinion they decided for some reason that he was the person and there's something else not only were some residents claiming Eadie killed Lisa but that police were covering it up because Ed's dad was a member of the police department but there's one huge problem with this theory Eadie has a rock-solid alibi I was working the restaurant that night in a crime watch daily exclusive and speaks out publicly for the first time since Lisa's murder I was working between my office and down on the floor and my sister was there waitressing so I was with my family and my friends that night and there were plenty of witnesses to verify that in according to police heads DNA does not match the sample taken at the crime scene it was never anything to hide and is one of my dearest friends and had nothing to do with it and is immediately cleared by police without a suspect in custody vicious rumors keep swirling they wouldn't let it go my thought and the whole thing was just just move ahead just keep moving forward and not worry about what people think and you just know it's not true and you just continue to just live your life and please continue with their investigation we just kept on getting samples from everyone that we could and we just always hope that at some point we would get a DNA here but they don't get a hit in fact months years and even decades go by 23 years to be exact and there's still no DNA match when it first happens I think everyone thinks you know they watched the TV shows and you know CSI and things like that and in an hour everything's gonna get wrapped up the person's gonna be arrested and everybody's gonna know what happened and as time goes on you begin to understand how reality doesn't match that case appears to be cold and on the fast track to frozen the new DA Anthony galloon II remembers the case he was a young boy growing up in the area when the news first broke of Lisa's abduction and murder I was in my adolescence at the time you know it's something that resonated and stuck with you and in some ways haunted the town of Agawam and the people who experienced it this case means the world to a lot of people who developed a commitment to Lisa and developed a commitment to Lisa's family to tell them that we had the person who's responsible for their dear daughter's death then just months into his administration Diego Luna gets wind of cutting-edge technology known as phenotype in it's a process that takes a DNA sample and turns it into a digital composite sketch today I am releasing the snapshot composite sketches as developed by pair-bond to the public this forensic testing has predicted that Lisa's assailant has fair – very fair complexion some crackling hateful whore brown eyes and brown or black hair the Sigurd family is front and center for the unveiling we're so hopeful hopeful that this is going to bring for Lisa the justice that she so richly deserves I thought this is our chance this is our biggest chance and probably 20 years to find the person who had killed her and when they look at the sketch of the man who apparently took lesha's life it was very difficult when I first saw it trying to think do I know that person did I go to high school with them you know were we friends so cops have the killer's DNA and a composite of his face now they just need a name what's the face of a killer it's hard to say but his face is one we ended up looking back at persons who had been identified for one reason or another and then sort of cross-referencing that with people who had refused to give their DNA voluntarily then prosecutors make an unprecedented move we went through a legal process that was devised by our team led by myself and Captain Chris Wilcox and through that legal process we were attempting to compel a certain identified small list of individuals to provide their DNA Massachusetts State Police visit a handful of homes serving search warrants to collect DNA samples one person on the list has been on their radar since the investigation began but refused to give his DNA at the time troopers knock on his door the man is not home but his roommate passes on the information with essentially a message that state troopers are looking for you Massachusetts school teacher Lisa's eager to has been abducted and killed for 25 years investigators track down every lead and even use the latest technology to create a composite sketch of her killer the composite narrows down their suspects but when troopers attempt to collect DNA from their remaining persons of interest one man appears to skip town and at that point put him on our radar much more significantly than the very next day Massachusetts State Troopers get a surprise visit someone walked into upstate police barracks and provided us with some information that was very compelling it's potentially explosive evidence in the form of letters and the writer none other than the man who is currently am ia I read the letters and at that moment I called the discret Ernie Anthony glowing and when we thought this might be our guy he purportedly hand wrote a series of notes that amounted to his confession and responsibility for the killing of Lisa's eager if true police have a confessed killer on the loose and they have no idea what else this seemingly desperate and dangerous man is capable of doing right away cops issue an arrest warrant for their suspect and alert surrounding law enforcement agencies to be on the lookout they also give a heads up to the Sigurd family that an arrest could be imminent the police really want to share with us but they had to be very careful with what they shared what we knew was this is the best lead we've had since the beginning of the investigation and we're sorry we can't tell you more hours later the fugitive is spotted outside of Massachusetts and police closed in he was tracked down to Connecticut where he had made some efforts to commit suicide the man is treated for a failed overdose attempt and arrested awaiting extradition back to Massachusetts meanwhile investigators get a search warrant and collect the suspects DNA from items found at his home the sample is sent out for comparison against the DNA of Lisa's eager killer and after years of waiting it's just a matter of hours before the lab results come back I remember that moment very distinctly and it was very short email I can remember seeing the word match underlined the next morning the secrets get a knock on their door one for which they've been waiting a quarter of a century was the DA the Chief of Police oh my god head of the detective bureau and they set us down and said we got him we got and it was like a cold wash going over you and then a flush and then uh really are you sure because over 25 and a half years we've had lots of looking good investigators explain they have a written confession in DNA match my immediate thought to myself was wow this is this is finally it it was literally unbelievable in that after that amount of time you know statistically it was virtually impossible that this was ever going to happen and then it did but exactly who is Lisa's alleged killer the DA calls an urgent news conference to reveal once and for all the man's identity today I am informing the public that the search for Lisa's assailant is over last Friday September 15th an arrest warrant was issued from the Westfield District Court for Gary age 48 of west springfield massachusetts which charges him with the murder aggravated rape and kidnapping of Lisa's eager on April 15th 1992 it was probably one of the one of the strangest moments I've had in my life looking at the face a picture the person who had done this to our Lisa after 25 years being able to have a name and have a face to put with the anger that I had about my sister's killer it was why I was feeling like at least I had a focus now and it turns out the local residents worst fears were realized he's been among us he's been in the community the suspect grew up in the neighboring town of Long Meadow only five miles from Lisa's home town of Agawam he had been married and went through a divorce around the time or just before the murder he has one child that child is now adult and according to recent news reports Gary's ex-wife Joyce McDonald told relatives at the time of Lisa's death that she thought her husband was involved sadly no one took her seriously because she was battling alcoholism and what about a likeness to the earlier composite I wasn't ready for to see his twin and I didn't for me it was more important with the picture to eliminate people as opposed to identify people but do they recognise the man who allegedly murdered Lisa I had never heard the name Gary Shara before the news conference I had never heard of this person Lisa's friend Edie Bugatti who lived the past two and a half decades under a cloud of suspicion is also present at the press conference that's a feeling of incredible relief a friend of mine summed it up perfect and he said for 25 years he said you woke up 70% at Bugatti and he said and today you're 100% and I appreciated that and that sums it up ever Gotti is owed an apology by every person who slandered him and had a mean and horrible comment to say about him while the news conference is under way Massachusetts State Police troopers pick up the suspect from Connecticut and begin extradition back to Massachusetts and as they make their way across Route five South End bridge connecting the two states there was a line of traffic and it was bumper-to-bumper and people the community knew that we had them and we were bring them back as we're going through that traffic people were literally putting their hands off the windows of the cars fist bumping that and so if it felt good that that part of it felt felt very rewarding to all the troopers and the local officers that were involved in this there was a bit of excitement and joy about the prospect of this being something real but there was a lot of caution too because there were some false alarms in the past over many many years the news media gets wind of an arrest cameras are recording as a police escort arrives outside the Agawam Police Headquarters it'll be the first time the community will get a glimpse the man who terrorized their small town all those years ago then the moment everyone has been waiting for very sure Gary Shara enters the court to be charged with Lisa's murder the secret family is in court as he enters a plea of not guilty it is the first time they have seen the man who stands accused of killing their Lisa I'm bordering between that angry and that that feeling that you you just you're numb and you don't have any feelings but for the Zhi Gertz this trial is not about the man who allegedly murdered their daughter it's about justice for Lisa your life will never be the same but bringing the person to justice at least that's something you can do for them

48 thoughts on “Lisa Ziegert case: Developments in Massachusetts teacher’s cold case”

  1. I know there were not cell phones readily available in 1991 but that person who came in and heard noises could of still called 911 and possible stopped the murder….

  2. I feel it's extremely tragic, her significant other had to live under a cloud of suspicion for ~25 years.
    Shame on all who behaved in a bad way towards him!

  3. After watching so many of these videos from this channel i got nightmares but I aint gonna stop watching lol

  4. This is his pic from around the time of the murder with the composite..
    https://images.app.goo.gl/xBjLJEERxLq16Kou6

  5. Notice how everyone that gets killed is made out to be the best person ever.
    People say "rest in peace" when the b/tch is probably living in a meth lab sellin pu55y

  6. Now
    Me: This will be the last episode that I will watch
    After 4 hours
    Me again: for real this is the last one
    Ohhhhh😮 my God I’m addicted!

  7. Its a shame they didn't show photo of the perp 25 yes ago the likeness would have been spot on also that Italian cop would be great in goodfellas ll.

  8. God rest your soul Lisa Ziegert ♥ i hope your enjoying heaven, you deserve to be there then this hell on earth

  9. Do a video on the murder of Wanda Marie McCurry Thomas she was murdered in 1997 in Alabama case has always been a mess never found the second murder

  10. Justice is elusive & rarely applied appropriately. Corrupt &/or lazy indifferent oftentimes racist cops, a justice system that imprisons the innocent, mentally ill & those with a low i.q. along with the guilty, judges on the take. Fortunately, although it took a little over 25 years, they got the assailant & didn't falsely arrest anyone in this case. Ed Burgatti breathes a sigh of relief daily I assure you.

  11. This is why we need EYE FOR AN EYE LAW. You killed her you die. Not lets put you in prison where you get 3 meals a day, t.v, video games. Where the VICTIMS family has to pay for him to LIVE and laugh everyday. The town pays for it. If you pay taxes then you're paying for HIM to LIVE. I say take him to the middle of town and shoot him in the head. Or drop him off on an island no where close to anything but ocean water and leave him there forever. The FAMILY struggles everyday to go on and live so should he

  12. If only that lady that came in at closing would have called the cops the perp MAY have been caught before killing this poor sweet young woman. Such a horrible shame.

  13. I really want to be a cop/detective someday and this show makes me so inspired to help solve all these cases❤️ 🚔

  14. I was a bit frustrated with this documentary. We never heard why he assaulted and killed Lisa. What was his trigger? What happened in court? How much time was he given? What made his ex wife think he did it 25 years back? This one came to a screeching halt….

  15. Damn this is so close to where I live. I know these areas. It always seems surreal seeing smaller towns you know on these types of shows.

  16. Why were the people in this town blaming Lisa's friend Ed? That was weird. I know police are busy, but if they suspect someone and that person refuses to give their DNA. All they have to do is keep an eye on that person and get a glass they drank out of, or pick up a cigarette butt or gun they threw out.

  17. " Average siblings and an average family living a happy average life ", that's not so simple to achieve nowadays!

  18. every time i watch this true crime watch is it just me or dose a lot of this shit happen in small ass towns .

  19. How the killers can just go about their day, like nothing happened is sick. Remorse, guilt, trauma, everything would be eating you alive. Sick motherfucker. Rot you sick fuck, rot.

  20. I don't know how parents of such tragic situations go on. I admire their grit and strength but if anything were to happen to my child, that would be curtains for me.

  21. I’m so glad DNA is helping find so many of these horrible people. May she Rest In Peace ❤️ if anyone is interested I make true crime videos, old and new, on my channel

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